sekou Andrews

Sekou Andrews ’94

Keiko Budech

Keiko Budech ’14


“You are what you say, so don’t say what you do, until you do what you are.”

These words are from a poem by Grammy-nominated spoken word poet Sekou Andrews ’94, winner of the 2023 Distinguished Alumni Award.

Andrews returned to campus (along with Young Alumni Award recipient Keiko Budech ’14, a community builder and racial equity practitioner) for this year’s awards dinner held during Alumni Weekend 2023. Andrews didn’t just thank the audience for his award; he gave them an electrifying performance that showed why he’s an acclaimed voice in the world of spoken word poetry.


Changing the world doesn’t mean leaving behind one’s alma mater. Many alumni give back to Pitzer in many ways—with their time, talent, or treasure—and earlier this summer the alumni board announced members and leadership.

Jai Phillips

Jai Phillips ’02

Elijah Pantoja

Elijah Pantoja ’18

Mark Cunningham

Mark Cunningham ’89 P’25

Diana Bob

Diana Bob ’02

Derric Johnson

Derric Johnson ‘ 95

Josue Pasillas

Josue Pasillas ’17

These two-year posts give members a chance to represent alumni voices on campus as well as engage with the alumni community at large in meaningful ways.

New members are Jai Phillips ’02, a senior program officer of youth development at the California Community Foundation; and Elijah Pantoja ’18, former assistant director of digital communications and analytics at Pomona College who previously supported Pitzer’s Annual Giving office.

New officers are Mark Cunningham ’89 P’25, who takes over the reins as board president from Diana Bob ’02. Bob has represented alumni interests on the Pitzer College Board of Trustees and has successfully overseen all pillars and committees of the board. Cunningham has been a board member since 2020 and serves as a senior partner in the New Orleans office of Jones Walker LLP, where he co-leads the firm’s Corporate Compliance and White Collar Defense Team.

Cunningham is joined by Derric Johnson ’95, race and justice chair, a newly created role to support alumni engagement by identifying and activating alumni in support of the College’s social justice programs and efforts; Josue Pasillas ’17, reunion chair, which is also a newly created role to help advance reunion giving efforts and increase alumni engagement through volunteerism and alumni weekend participation; and Alumni Board Secretary Elijah Pantoja, who has taken over this role from Pasillas.


Alumni are invited back to campus Oct. 20 to celebrate the installation ceremony for Strom C. Thacker, seventh president of Pitzer College. Many Pitzer alumni had a chance to meet President Thacker during a special mimosa brunch this spring, a casual occasion that gave everyone a chance to learn more about his vision for the College. We will formally welcome President Thacker as a member of the Pitzer community with a special ceremony. Alumni are invited to attend: more updates and information will be coming soon.


SHANNON SPACCAROLTELLIThere are many ways to keep up with your alma mater. One simple way is to visit for information on alumni news and upcoming events. Another is to watch out for Connections, our regular monthly newsletter for Pitzer’s alumni community. You can also reach out for help at [email protected] or contact Shannon Spaccarotelli (pictured), senior director for Alumni & Family Engagement and Annual Giving, and the entire alumni engagement team.


Follow Pitzer’s alumni community for the latest updates and news about your fellow alumni.